an urban scale curtain for tampere


luca poian forms presents its proposal for the new sara hildén art museum as a gateway between the city of tampere and its park. the project is envisioned as a contextual addition to the urban fabric of the finlayson district, enhancing the existing urban thresholds and creating an experience that is at once memorable and iconic.


framed by the scenery of wilhelm von nottbeck park, the museum emerges as a monolith, its geometry and proportions carefully informed by the scale and rationality of the surrounding 19th century industrial buildings. a generous setback along finlaysoninkatu street at the southern end of the site creates an urban plaza that seamlessly integrates with the existing pedestrian network.


the building is at once recognized by its facade, which pleats away like an urban-scale curtain, framing the main entrance to the foyer and creating a pedestrian passage connecting the park and finlaysoninkatu street.

luca poian sara hildénimages © filippo bolognese images | @filippobolognese



the intricate facade by luca poian forms


luca poian forms (see more here) carefully contrasts the bold volume of its sara hildén museum with its intricate exterior skin. a self-supporting brick facade designed to provide varying degrees of transparency and opacity, creating a protective enclosure that safeguards the exhibitions whilst providing carefully curated views of the surroundings. by virtue of its geometry, the facade’s corrugated form has inherent structural stiffness that allows it to exist as an independent system, endowing the building with a rich tectonic language. this independent relationship between volume and skin means that the structure is unencumbered by the weight of a heavy brick facade. 


the meticulous attention to the building’s exterior not only harmonizes the relationship between the new and the existing, but further enhances finlayson’s cultural identity by harkening back to the textile manufacturing industry that has characterised the region throughout history. the building is thus conceived as a celebration of the site, creating a volume that completes the existing urban fabric, enhances the existing pedestrian passages, and democratises the experience of art viewership.

luca poian sara hildén



inside the proposed sara hildén art museum


luca poian forms’ proposal embraces a carefully proportioned, highly rational layout that not only prioritizes the visitor’s experience, but also the museum’s operational efficiency.


arriving from finlaysoninkatu street, visitors are welcomed by a grand multi-story atrium that doubles as a pedestrian link between the newly created enhanced pedestrian network on the south and wilhelm von nottbeck park on the north. more than just a museum’s lobby, the foyer is conceived as an urban space that celebrates the public programs associated with the museum, offering a suite of accessible spaces serving the institution’s wider civic agenda. these include the museum’s art cafe, flexible conference rooms and meeting areas, as well as the museum shop adjacent to the main lobby. visitor and staff circulation are carefully thought through in order to minimize crossover and provide an enhanced front of house experience.

luca poian sara hildén luca poian forms' sara hildén art museum is cloaked in an intricate urban-scale curtain luca poian forms' sara hildén art museum is cloaked in an intricate urban-scale curtain



project info:


project title: sara hildén art museum

architecture: luca poian forms | @lucapoianforms

location: tampere, finland

client: varma mutual pension insurance company, sara hildén foundation, city of tampere

awards: honorable mention, 2021 golden trezzini awards

status: proposal

visualizations: filippo bolognese images | @filippobolognese